I am a woman. I live my life as a woman, and that’s how I should be perceived. I’m not passing as anything. I’m being. Being myself. I have such a complicated relationship with the concept of passing, period. Not even applying it to my own life, but just the idea that “to pass” means that you’re passing as something that you’re not. Right? Passing comes off as if you are actively, right, because it’s a verb, you’re actively engaging in some kind of trickery or deception.
So that’s where I get irritated with passing, because anytime that I walk on the street my gender is visible. I am a woman. People see me and take me as a woman, and that is not passing. That’s me just being. But once I disclose that I am trans, things change, and then I become an oddity. I become an object, something that is objectified and gawked over. And my humanity and womanhood is then checked, and put into question. So I can just imagine someone who does not have the conditional privilege of passing having to have to deal with that all the time. So those are the layered relationships with the lived experiences of being a woman that is often seen as cis.